A trade name is the name under which a company is run. The right to a trade name arises as a result of the use of that name as an indication for a company. The name has to be actually used to distinguish the company (to the outside world), for instance on stationery, invoices, on the façade, etc.
It is important to make a distinction between trade names and trademarks, as the requirements for the creation and maintenance of the rights (in a trade name and a trademark) are different. In economic intercourse trademarks are signs used to distinguish goods or services of a company. A trade name distinguishes the company as a whole.
Trade name law intends to prevent confusion and deception. The majority of conflicts about trade names regards the risk of confusion. Vriesendorp & Gaade among others offers availability searches and assessments, and moreover we are able to represent you in court and in case of a conflict/infringement.